Letters to the Editor: May 11

Orphaned bear cubs; Omar Khadr; City of Cranbrook/River's Crossing

Orphaning cubs

To the bear ‘hunters’ who killed a mother bear near McGinty Lake last Thursday night:

The so-called bear ‘hunt’, where an animal is chased up a tree by hounds, then shot by hunters below, is hard to understand for many of us, especially during the spring months, when young cubs are with the sows.

When the chase is on, sows chase the cubs up a tree to safety, and often are driven by the hounds away from the cubs.

One such ‘hunt’ occurred near Dry Lake and McGinty Lake in Meadowbrook last Wednesday night. The baying of hounds crashing through the bush, the roaring of trucks following, and then four shots, followed by four more. Obviously many of the shots fired into the air missed, and the bullets went … where? The final shot was followed by the hoots and hollers of excited males, obviously proud that they were able to hit a stationary animal cornered in a tree.

The result: as of Saturday night, one of the sow’s orphaned cubs was still huddled in a tree on private property near where the hound chase began, and another cub has disappeared into the gulley between Dry Lake and Mcginty. Conservation Officers are trying to lure the cub down from the tree to traps, so it can be used to lure its sibling, and perhaps both of them can be saved at a wildlife rehabilitation centre.

Bear hunters: please consider not hunting in the spring. If you feel the need to do this, please take the time to ensure you are not killing sows, as the cubs are likely not with them after a long hound chase.

Wildlife managers, please consider halting this barbaric hunt again, as it was in the early 2000’s. Filling the freezer is one thing. Orphaning cubs for a trophy is something else.

Dave Quinn/Kimberley

Omar Khadr

When is a murder not a murder?

I have a problem understanding why Stevey Harper and the US Military have such a hate on for Omar Khadr.

Khadr was 15 when his dastardly deed led to his incarceration and subsequent  inprisonment at Guantunamo Bay.  Child soldiers are supposed to be treated differently than adults, an agreement that Canada signed on too. Khadr qualified for protection under the conditions of that  agreement.

Would Harper say “let the dogs have at him”  if the situation was reversed and it was a 15-year-old Canadian soldier that had tossed the grenade, killing a Taliban soldier and then held in prison and tried as a war criminal.  I find it unlikely, although Harper’s track record in helping Canadians out of country suggests it a toss up whether he get his fingers dirty or not.

Khadr’s trial and conviction was at the hands of a US Military court, not a civilian trial and at the very least, from all accounts, heavily biased towards a finding of “guilty” from day one of the hearings.

The Canadian courts have ruled that Khadr should be freed from incarceration  and we now see Harper and his minions having hissy fits that the courts saying enough is enough.

Khadr has served 15 years for his “crime”, which he said he pled guilty to in order to get out of the continued mistreatment  he endured in Guantanamo, a plea which he is apparently going to court to have withdrawn on the basis that it was made under duress.

Part of being a soldier, regardless of country, is signing up knowing they may die in action, what they don’t sign up for is being brought to trial for murder if they are  captured by the enemy.  The US Military and Mr. Harper may have set a president that has put our servicemen and women in harms way!

I wish to make clear that I am not writing in support or non support of Mr. Khadr, however I would appreciate  your readers to consider my question, “when is a murder not a murder”?

Don Ohs/Cranbrook

City/River’s Crossing

Where is the justification for Cranbrook’s involvement in this entire project located miles from town? Surely there is far greater reason and justification for spending within the city itself. As a taxpayer I never have or will condone the dubious spending of money beyond city boundaries nor am I likely to. There are far worthier projects deserving taxpayer monies within our fair city.

Bob Pearce/Cranbrook